These Coconut Cheesecake Bars are creamy, sweet, and loaded with real coconut in every bite! Baked in cake pan and no water bath required, this recipe is easy and delicious! This family friendly recipe is always a crowd pleaser.
1 and 1/4 cups finely shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
For the Coconut Mousse:
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
3 tbsp powdered sugar
1 Tablespoon coconut cream (the thick variety)
1 teaspoon coconut extract
4 ounces full-fat cream cheese, softened
toasted coconut, for garnish
For the Graham Cracker Crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil, allowing two of the sides to overlap (you want an overhang of at least 2-inches on two sides) and spray lightly with nonstick baking spray. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter and, using a rubber spatula, mix well to combine. Press the mixture into the bottom - and slightly up the sides - of the prepared pan.
Bake the crust in preheated oven for 10 minutes. Remove the crust from the oven and set aside on a cooling rack until needed.
Reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees (F).
For the Coconut Cheesecake Bars:
In the body of a high power blender, food processor, stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or in a large bowl using a hand held electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and sour cream until completely smooth.
Add sugar and beat until smooth, scraping down the sides and bottom of bowl as needed. Add in the eggs and yolks and beat until combined.
Using a rubber spatula, fold in the coconut extract and coconut cream. Fold in the shredded coconut, mixing just until combined.
Pour filling on top of prepared crust, and spread evenly.
Check to ensure your oven has cooled to 325°F, then place the pan in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the edges have set and the middle is still a little jiggly. The cheesecake bars will firm up a lot as they cool.
Remove the bars from the oven, and cool at room temperature for one hour. Then refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
When you're ready to serve: use the foil overhang to lift the cheesecake bars from the pan and transfer them to a cutting board. Top with coconut cream, then, using a large, sharp knife, slice the slab into squares, wiping the knife clean with a damp cloth between slices. Serve at once.
For the Coconut Mousse:
Add heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, coconut cream, and coconut extract to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whip on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, about 4 to 5 minutes.
Set whipped cream aside. In a separate bowl, beat cream cheese until completely smooth.
Fold whipped cream into cream cheese, stirring until well combined.
Remove cheesecake from the pan, then top with the mousse.
Sprinkle with toasted coconut and serve!
Coconut Cheesecake Bars will keep, stored in the refrigerator, for up to 4 days. You may also freeze them for up to 2 months.
To freeze: fully cool the cheesecake bars, then place the cooled cheesecake (whole or sliced) on a freezer-friendly platter and freeze, uncovered, until completely firm. Once firm, remove the cheesecake from the freezer and wrap it in heavy-duty aluminum foil. Then place it in a freezer bag; seal the bag and return it to freezer for up to 2 months. When ready to serve: remove the foil and defrost in the fridge overnight.
Recipe by Baker by Nature at https://bakerbynature.com/coconut-cheesecake-bars/